Lawrence Mishel discusses a couple of the problems with President Bush's attempt for reelection on the "everything is getting better" type campaign. Essentially, it points out that although the President's ads do have some good information on the positive sides of the economy, it really does so while ignoring the crap behind it.
Now, to some extent, this is to be expected. Just as John Kerry cannot claim, without some pretty freaky foreknowledge, that he will be responsible for job creation if he is elected, President Bush should not have to take all the flak for the economy going bad (and neither can Bill Clinton for that matter). Now, this is not to absolve all Presidents of their policy affects on statistics. However, it is to say that economic cycles tend to be stupidly complicated, and that people need to think about other factors before they vote (though this is probably asking for too much, as Ray Fair is still pretty consistent in his predictions).
Thomas Friedman also backs up this last point (not necessarily my fear, though) that
"judging from many polls, it seems that Mr. Bush is being rewarded for the economy's tentative recovery more than he is being punished for Iraq's troubling slide."
RCP reaffirms the polling data: "... Even after oversampling Democrats (35%) and Independents (36%) and undersampling Republicans (29%), CBS/NYT got the following result: Bush up 2 points on Kerry (43-41) in the three-way race among registered voters. I'm pretty sure that's not what they expected." For those of you who are wondering how Kerry would do in a 2-way, the CBS News/NYT poll has Bush up by .5% instead.